New Directions in Just-War Theory Authored by: Dr. J. T. Reiner. July 30, 2018

One of the major developments in international law since World War II is the growth of human rights law dedicated to ensuring the protection of individuals from violence wherever they are, including from their own state. Tracking such changes, in recent decades, just-war theory has evolved from its traditional focus on state sovereignty in the direction of a rights-based approach that treats just wars as a form of global law enforcement. This monograph provides a survey of these developments, focusing on the increased scope for humanitarian intervention, principles of justice after war, and on the question of the responsibility of combatants for assessing the justice of their military's cause. It concludes by considering the call for strengthening international institutions and training programs in military ethics.

U.S. Landpower in the South China Sea Authored by: LTC Clarence J Bouchat (USAF, Ret). July 07, 2017

U.S. landpower is an essential, but often overlooked, element of national power in semi-enclosed maritime environments like the South China Sea. This monograph gives U.S. policymakers a better understanding of the role of the U.S. Army, Marine Corps, and Special Operations Forces (SOF) in the region through potential combat operations employing wide area defense and maneuver; deterrence through forward presence and peacetime operations; and security engagement with landpower-dominant allies, partners, and competitors in the region. Landpower’s capabilities are also essential for direct support of the air and sea services and other government organization’s success when operating in this theater in direct support of U.S. national interests.

Current Russia Military Affairs Edited by: Dr John R Deni. July 27, 2018

What are the key strategic objectives of Russian foreign and security policy? How has Russian operational planning been affected by experiences in Georgia, Ukraine, and elsewhere in recent years? What international or domestic factors most influence Russian force modernization? These and other questions were at the top of the agenda on May 1, 2018, as the U.S. Army War College's Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) and the U.S. European Command (EUCOM) gathered some of the best minds from academia, think tanks, and government to discuss current Russian military affairs The objective of the invite-only workshop was to inform EUCOM's efforts vis-à-vis Russia, and to bridge the gap between leading scholarly work and the practice of U.S. security policy. This compendium of executive summaries from each of the featured workshop speakers provides critical analysis and important recommendations for policy-makers and other practitioners of American foreign policy.

Transforming the Force: The 11th Air Assault Division (Test) from 1963 to 1965 Authored by: Brigadier General Thomas C. Graves. June 27, 2017


This monograph will answer the question: Can the U.S. Army apply to the current “prototype brigade” the lessons that were learned during the development and experimentation of the 11th Air Assault Division (Test)? Having established that the criteria of DTLOMS is a valuable tool for evaluating change in military systems, the next step is to apply those criteria to evaluate the changes that occurred in the formation of the 11th Air Assault Division (Test) from 1963 to 1965. In order to accomplish this, a study of the separate elements of DTLOMS will be conducted in order to determine how the 11th Air Assault Division reorganized itself and conducted operations during that period. The benchmark for studying the elements of DTLOMS will be the use of air mobility during the Ia Drang campaign of November 1965.
Specifically, this monograph will attempt to answer the following six questions:
1. How did the division develop doctrine to support the transition to airmobile warfare?
2. How did the division determine the proper organization to facilitate warfighting with the airmobile division?
3. How did the division train leaders to support the new doctrine and organization?
4. How did the division conduct field training to certify its soldiers and units in the new tactics?
5. Did building a new force require any specific soldier skills; and if so, how were those skills cultivated?
6. How did the division adopt and recommend changes to material and equipment to support the new methods of fighting?
Each of these questions addresses one aspect of the DTLOMS and will be used to measure change in the 11th Air Assault (Test) Division from the beginning in 1963 to the redesignation to the 1st Cavalry Division in 1965. Finally, this study will synthesize these changes and determine which lessons learned can be applied to ongoing experimentation in the U.S. Army of the 21st century.

Strategic Insights: An EU Military Headquarters: A Cure in Search of an Illness? Authored by: Dr John R Deni. November 14, 2016


In mid-September, European Union (EU) Commission President Jean Claude Juncker delivered the Commision's annual State of the Union address.1 Coming on the heels of the British vote to leave the EU, the address provided a roadmap for overcoming the challenges brought about by what Juncker termed an “existential crisis.” Among the key components of the roadmap were several initiatives related to defense and security. For example, Juncker noted rather bluntly that Europe could not rely on soft power alone and that it therefore needed to “toughen up.” This was music to Washington’s ears, particularly when Juncker went on to argue for Europe to stop “piggy-backing” on the military might of others (read: Washington). European countries already appear to be heeding his call. After years of flat budgets and defense austerity, there is a growing body of evidence that European states have in fact begun to increase defense spending over the last couple of years.2 Although some European states, such as Poland, have been increasing defense spending—if only slightly—for many years, evidence now indicates that such increases are broad-based, if perhaps uneven. For example, recent defense spending increases in Eastern Europe are greater than what is occurring in Northern or Western Europe. Regardless, Juncker was right to promote and encourage this emerging trend.

Strategic Insights: Bridging the Civil-Military Gap Authored by: Dr Tami Davis Biddle. November 10, 2016


The American soldiers who returned home from the war in 1945 were greeted with joy and open arms. They were feted in parades, and celebrated in books, films, and songs. They were the heroes of the war that created modern America—wealthy, technologically-advanced, and sitting astride the world. Later they would come to be known as “the greatest generation”; it is a label that many of them eschew, but it speaks to the way they have been appropriated in American public memory and national identity. The soldiers who returned home from the war in the early-1970s came back to a nation that wanted nothing to do with them. Hostile stares, sometimes worse, greeted them on their arrival. American confusion, anger, and guilt about Vietnam were re-directed to its draftee army. After the war, the U.S. military adopted an all-volunteer force structure. For the services, this choice solved many of the problems of dealing with unpredictable civilian draftees and the sometimes-fickle population from which they were drawn. For the American people, it meant that their husbands, sons, and brothers faced very low odds of being asked to go to war. This shift, however, went far to sever the link between American civilians and the military that represents them, protects them, and does their bidding in the world.

Strategic Insights: The Authored by: Dr David Lai. October 25, 2016


There is a widely-shared view in China that the United States has ill will toward China and is always looking for opportunities to make trouble for China. The Chinese believe that this was the case when China was a poor developing nation; and they particularly believe it to be the case today as China is rapidly becoming a great power. The Chinese claim that U.S. influence on every aspect of Chinese foreign and domestic relations is so ubiquitous that they have a name for it: “U.S. factor/shadow/specter”. The Chinese view, however, is largely based on unsubstantiated speculations, erroneously-formed impressions, and poorly-staged analyses; and cannot stand up to close scrutiny. The Chinese assertion that the Philippines vs. China arbitration of 2016 is a U.S.-orchestrated, directed, and supported farce is an excellent example.

Strategic Insights: The Post-Conflict and the Transformation of Colombia’s Armed Forces Authored by: Dr R Evan Ellis. August 17, 2016


From July 11 to 15, 2015, I had the opportunity to participate in a seminar in Bogota, Colombia, on the topic of transnational organized crime that brought together security sector professionals from 10 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean, co-sponsored by U.S. Army South and the Colombian military. The activity occurred on the heels of the June 23rd announcement by the Colombian Government that a final agreement was in sight with the country’s largest terrorist organization, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), just days after leaders of the 1st and 7th fronts of the FARC announced that they would not participate in the deal.

Strategic Insights: Strategic Implications of Brexit Authored by: Dr John R Deni. June 24, 2016


The momentous decision of British voters to leave the European Union (EU) is already having major repercussions in both economics and politics. In the former, investors fled uncertainty for more stable opportunities, while in the latter there are already calls for another Scottish independence referendum. In the worlds of defense and security, the implications are less clear, at least in the short run. What appears far more certain though is that the economic and political implications are likely to have profound long-term effects on NATO, U.S. national security, and the U.S. Army’s relationship with one of America’s closest allies. In response, and in order to mitigate the most damaging effects of the Brexit vote, the United States needs to intensify military cooperation with a longstanding UK rival – namely, France.

Strategic Insights: The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) and Trinidad and Tobago: Establishing a Dangerous Presence in the Western Hemisphere Authored by: Dr. Jose de Arimateia da Cruz. May 13, 2016


In his National Security Strategy (February 2015), President Barack Obama stated that, “the threat of catastrophic attacks against our homeland by terrorists has diminished but still persists…Our adversaries are not confined to a distinct country or region. Instead, they range from South Asia through the Middle East and into Africa.” However, the President failed to mention that terrorists and sympathizers are already making inroads into the Western Hemisphere as well. An example of this is the nation-island of Trinidad and Tobago. It has been reported that about 100 Trinidadian citizens have gone to Syria to fight along with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL). According to the former commander of the U.S. Southern Command, General John F. Kelly, in his posture statement before the 114th Congressional Senate Armed Services Committee, “when these foreign fighters return, they will possess operational experience, ties to global extremists, and possible intent to harm Western interests.”